Delays for drivers as gas pipe replaced

THE first stage of a �500,000 project to replace a gas main gets under way today – with bosses vowing to keep any disruption to a minimum.

National Grid will start laying a replacement pipe underneath the B1119, between Saxmundham and Knodishall.

Meanwhile, engineers from Suffolk County Council will also begin work to strengthen Trust Farm Culvert, at Sternfield.

The two sets of works have been timed to start together in a bid to keep disruption to motorists to a minimum.

Suffolk County Council’s works are due to be completed by September 17, while National Grid’s are expected to finish by the end of October.

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The company will be laying a replacement gas main under the B1119, from Manor Gardens, Saxmundham to Knodishall.

The �200,000 phase will see the existing cast-iron main replaced with a plastic pipe that has a life-span of 80 years.

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The work represents the first stage of a two-phase programme, totalling �500,000, to lay a replacement gas main from Saxmundham to Leiston.

The second part of the work is expected to be carried out next year.

Karl Shipp, National Grid’s network supervisor, said: “This is essential work that will ensure local people continue to enjoy safe and reliable gas supplies for decades to come.

“We always try to minimize the impact of our work on local people.

“We are co-ordinating with Suffolk County Council so that we carry out our works simultaneously, reducing disruption to the local community and motorists.

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused and we would like to assure people that we will make every effort to complete the works as quickly as we can.”

While the works are under way, traffic flows will be controlled by single-way traffic lights except for a nine-day road closure from Tuesday, August 31 to Wednesday, September 8, when the B1119 will be closed between Manor Gardens and the Knodishall junction.

During the road closure a signed alternative route will be in place between the B1121 in Saxmundham via Sternfield, Friston, Knodishall and Leiston.

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